Monday, March 21, 2016

Natto, The Ultimate Bone-Building Superfood

Natto is a Japanese food that is fermented soybeans.  For those of you who know me, you know I am not a soy fan but when soybeans are fermented most of soy's negative attributes are changed to be healing.  During the fermentation process soy's toxic phytate and antinutrient levels are eliminated along with it's thyroid inhibiting qualities as well.  Once fermented, soybeans are the most powerful bone building superfood on the planet.  Samurai are said to have eaten natto everyday.  But I will tell you now, if you don't already know, natto is slimy and smells foul and yet 7.5 billion packages of natto are consumed in Japan yearly.  For those of us who are not used to it that's why I provide it in pill form for my patients.  

Natto's superfood abilities comes from a high vitamin K2 concentration.  So if you don't muscle test for the natto I then test you for a vitamin D3 and K2 supplement.  

Habitual intake of natto was associated with a significant and beneficial effect on bone health in elderly men and this association is primarily due to vitamin K content of natto was concluded in Osteoporos Int. 2012: 23 (2).

Women who ate 4 packets of natto a week reduced bone mass loss on the thigh bone by 80% according to Journal of Nutrition 2006: 136

Those in the highest third of vitamin K2 intakes were 52% less likely to develop calcification of arteries according to Artherosclerosis. 1995: 226 Also Menaquinone (Vitamin K2) is associated with a reduced risk of coronary heart disease. Journal of Nutrition 2004: 134 (11)

Vitamin K is proven to help rebuild bone and protect against heart disease but there are two kinds.  Vitamin K1 is the type found in dark leafy vegetables and for a long time I recommended them as a high source of vitamin K.  However, studies show now that we only absorb 10% of K1 from dark leafy vegetables.  Research has now turned to more effective vitamin K2.  Vitamin K2 is hard to get from food other than natto so next time you are at a Japanese restaurant or section of the grocery store try it.  It's an acquired taste as sometimes healthy things are!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Are You An Empath? 

I know I have talked to a few of you about being an empath because I can see how it affects your health in a negative way.  I wanted to take the time now to explain to you that an empath is a person that is affected by other people's energies, and have an innate ability to intuitively feel and perceive others. Most empaths don't understand that they have this ability and seem to be 'sensitive to others'.  It is best to figure out if you are an empath and then how best to use it as a strength and learn how to protect yourself energetically from others' energy for your life is unconsciously influenced by others' desires, wishes, thoughts, and moods. Being an empath is much more than being highly sensitive.  
Empaths have a deep sense of knowing that accompanies empathy and are often compassionate, considerate, and understanding of others.  There are also varying levels of strength in empaths which may be related to the individual√≠s awareness of self, understanding of the powers of empathy, and/or the acceptance or non-acceptance of empathy by those associated with them, including family and peers. Generally, those who are empathic grow up with these tendencies and do not learn about them until later in life.

Empaths are sensitive to TV, videos, movies, news and broadcasts. Violence or emotional dramas depicting shocking scenes of physical or emotional pain inflicted on adults, children or animals can bring an empath easily to tears. At times, they may feel physically ill or choke back the tears. Some empaths will struggle to comprehend any such cruelty, and will have grave difficulty in expressing themselves in the face of another's ignorance, closed-mindedness and obvious lack of compassion. They simply cannot justify the suffering they feel and see.
The following are signs that you might be an empath:

You sense fear, anxiety, and stress from other people. You draw these feelings into your body, resolving them as your own physical pain and symptoms. It doesn't have to be people you don't know or don't like. You're also impacted by friends, family, and colleagues.
You quickly feel exhausted, drained, and unhappy in the presence of crowds.
Noise, smells, and excessive talking can set off your nerves and anxiety.
You need to be alone to recharge your energy.
You're less likely to intellectualize what you're feeling. Your feelings are easily hurt.
You're naturally giving, generous, spiritually inclined, and a good listener.
You tend to ensure that you've got an escape plan, so that you can get away fast, such as bringing your own car to events, etc.
The intimacy of close relationships can feel like suffocation or loss of your own self.

Recognize when people bring you down so you can spend less time with those people and draw healthier boundaries for yourself.  This is extremely important for you will not only absorb people's energy and emotions and feel them as your own but also store them in your body which lowers your health level.  
If you think you may be an empath take this quiz now,